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Gorilla FC players take Covid-19 tests ahead of training resumption

Steven Ntaribi, a former goalkeeper for local giants APR, is one of the big name signings Gorilla FC have made during the Covid-19 break to boost the club’s chances for a ticket to the 2019-20 Rwanda Premier League. / Photo: Courtesy.

Gorilla FC, one of the eight teams challenging for the two avaible tickets to the topflight league next season, have had their players undergo Covid-19 testing as the club prepares to start training.

Testing players and staff, as well as securing a joint residential camp for the entire group are some of the main requirements before teams are allowed by the Ministry of Sports to resume group training.

 

A total of 32 members; players, coaches and essential staff, took the Covid-19 tests on Tuesday, but, by press time Wednesday, the club was yet to receive permission to start training.

 

Gorilla FC will face Rwamagana City in the single-game knockout quarter-finals of the second division playoffs, which start on November 13 through 21.

 

In an interview with this publication on Wednesday, Gorilla head coach Emmanuel Ruremesha urged his players to step up their game for the challenge ahead.

“We are continuing individual exercises while we put together all the requirements to be allowed group training. The players have to be ready, especially in the mentality aspect, for the challenge ahead,” said the former Rayon Sports and SC Kiyovu tactician.

Ruremesha’s Gorilla side ranked second in Group A before the league was halted due to the Covid-19 pandemic in March, while Rwamagama were third in Group B.

The two finalists of the post-season second tier playoffs will automatically secure slots to the 2020/21 Rwanda Premier League, replacing Gicumbi and Heroes FC who were relegated in May.

Other quarter-finalists in the playoffs include former topflight league side Amagaju, Rugende, Alpha, Vision, Interforce and Étoile de l’Est.

Meanwhile, Gorilla have beefed up their squad with big name signings such as Pekeake ‘Pekinho’ Tuyisenge, Andre Lomami and goalie Steven Ntaribi in a bid to boost their chances for a spot into the first division next season.

pkamasa@newtimesrwanda.com

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